So, many of you have been asking me, “Vicki, why did you get this book done now, when you have been working on it for 35 years? Why did you title it Surpasses Understanding?
Well, I give credit to the youth who went with me to the Navajo Nation for our annual Christmas Distribution on December 21st of 2012. They worked so hard and gave so much love and happy service to our Navajo friends throughout the entire expedition. Every Christmas that I go, I feel the energy between both cultures shift and this year, all of the young women and men who served with me were part of creating the comfortable feeling of friendship and oneness that radiated easily between us all. I was so inspired by them all and so proud of all of their efforts. And then the icing on the cake was from the youth who were riding in the car home with me; they gave me an immeasurable gift.
It was an 8-hour drive and one of the girls asked me to share my story about my family’s deaths and how I survived. This was the first time that I had shared my story since brain surgery a year ago Dec 7th. As I shared with them, I kept the story to the personal details that only I would know about. I felt inspired to share the intimate story of moving home 6 months later and the healing spiritual experience I had with my dad during that night. I had never written it down because it was so personal, yet as I shared this with the youth, something magical happened. After I finished, each of them wanted to share their own story! I was amazed at the courage and commitment that each of these youth had as they cared for and nurtured their siblings and parents through their own rough times. My admiration and respect for each of them grew as I realized that none of them led on to the personal challenges they were overcoming, and I felt so proud to know each of them, and inspired that sharing my story had actually been the catalyst for this priceless time together.
Throughout the Christmas Holiday, I had that precious experience in the back of my mind and never stopped thinking of it. When my children went back home after celebrating the holiday together, I decided that I was going to finish the book and get it published. So I sat down at the computer on January 2nd and didn’t get up until I was finished on January 5th. It was as if I was glued to the screen and my fingers were not my own. The last 2 chapters came in 2 ½ hours without any effort and only a few minor typos that needed correction. The next 39 days were filled with draft after draft of editing until the manuscript was ready.
NoelleNatisha did all of the photography and shot the author pictures in the studio in an hour, the cover picture was shot in 5 minutes at my previous home where my family was killed; it was amazing how everything was just falling into place. Then she began the tedious process of typesetting and designing every page, chapter heading, borders, the cover and professional pages….the general design of the book itself. There is so much that went into it that we don’t notice!
At first, we wanted a hard cover with a dust jacket, but when we discovered the cost and what we would have to charge for each book, we decided on a perfect bound cover with a velvet laminate. I really liked the feel of the soft cover for people to hold to balance out some of the prickly parts of the book. This made it possible to offer the book at a lower cost, and possibly reach people who may not have the opportunity to spend more on a hard cover copy.
I began recording sessions with Marvin Payne experiencing even deeper levels of healing as I listened to my own story read to me by my own voice, as he created my Audio Book.
Heather Justesen began the process of converting files into eBook form for Amazon, Kindle, Nook and Barnes and Noble.
My book began to take on a life of its own and I began to feel the healing that you all have told me would only come with the accomplishment of this project. You were so right!
For those of you who don’t know me, this is my story of how I lost my mom and my two younger brothers to my dad’s anger and control rampage on September 12, 1977. After killing them, he waited for me for and hour intending to take my life and when that plan failed, thanks to events and people who kept me from coming home, he then took his own life. I was 19 years old.
Since tragedy has become a household word in today’s world, and we are all affected by these shocking events close to home and on the other side of the planet, this book’s time has come. Noelle brought to my attention the fact that there may be people who just need to hear that I have overcome the effects of this tragedy in my life, and it might give them some hope and something to hang on to during their own journey to heal and their refusal to live the life of a victim. And as a bonus, there may be someone who feels trapped by hopeless thoughts and forceful feelings who may just need another perspective to shine light on and illuminate a path to escape from reactive or premeditated behavior which may lead them to harm themselves or harm someone else. To turn, to remember and focus on what is good in their lives. If nothing is good, to stop long enough to break the action and to face-off the illusion of finality, and choose to go another direction and to start a NEW path with NEW possibilities and people and NEW results. There is always another way.
So we may ask ourselves:
- What do we do with these feelings that oftentimes paralyze us and rob us of living peaceful daily lives?
- Can I overcome the devastation that I feel when my life is interrupted by something that seems out of my control?
I address these questions and more in my book. Come join me…
My book is available on my website: www.vickitalmage.com/surpassesunderstanding
Watch for the updated photo gallery that also has more pictures, some articles and the obituary…
*There is a link above, but here is Vicki’s book trailer if you would like to watch it here